Friday, August 10, 2012

Super-Majority Requirement makes for Ineffectual Government

It may be that a country with a legislature requiring a super-majority in one of its houses, (here in the US the Senate) is ungovernable.

As the minority, it is in the interests of the Republicans to oppose everything. This will cause the Democrats to be ineffectual in governing, thus increasing the likelihood of the Republicans being elected to the majority in the next election. However, should the Republicans be elected to that majority after the election, it will be in the interests of the Democrats to oppose everything the Republicans try to do.  Thus the Democrats will demonstrate the Republican's  ineffectualness at governing, and so increase the likelihood of their own eventual return to power. Irrespective of which party is in the majority, the government is ineffectual, and in a permanent state of paralysis.

Now the Democrats may see it in their interests to allow the Republicans full play of their pernicious behavior, hoping that the electorate will become aroused by the offenses visited on them, and return to the Democratic fold.   Thus bad laws would not be opposed, but good ones would be. So the country is either ungoverned, or badly governed.

We owe Mitch McConnell a note of gratitude for this lesson in political principles.

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1 comment:

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